Artsy with Daniel Doubrovkine

Artsy is an online art marketplace. This might sound like a simple engineering problem–you just set up a basic ecommerce site, list some pieces of art, and start making money, right?

The art world is complicated. There are four major pillars: patrons, art fairs, galleries, and auctions. Bringing these different parts online is not trivial. And in order to do so, Artsy has to work with the existing ecosystem. It is not like the taxi industry, where you can aggressively compete against the pre-existing businesses. The art world is built around relationships and trust.

The engineering is hard too. An art auction results in a transaction for millions of dollars. In this way, building an auction system is like building a trading system. Latency needs to be very low, and you can’t make any mistakes or else customers could suffer to the tune of millions of dollars.

Daniel Doubrovkine is the CTO of Artsy, and he joins me to describe the complexities of the art market and the engineering challenges that come with building a software company around it.

Transcript

Transcript provided by We Edit Podcasts. Software Engineering Daily listeners can go to weeditpodcasts.com/sed to get 20% off the first two months of audio editing and transcription services. Thanks to We Edit Podcasts for partnering with SE Daily. Please click here to view this show’s transcript.

Sponsors


It’s never been easier to hit the ground running: MongoDB Atlas is the only database as a service from the engineers who built MongoDB. With continuous backup, VPC peering, monitoring, and security features, MongoDB Atlas gives you everything you need from MongoDB in an easy-to-use service. And even if you’re already running MongoDB in the cloud, Atlas makes migrating your deployment from another cloud service provider trivial, with its Live Import feature. Get started with a free, 3 node replica set: no credit card required. As an exclusive offer for Software Engineering Daily listeners, use code SEDaily for $10 dollars of credit for when you’re ready to scale up at mongoDB.com/sedailyMongoDB World is where the world’s fastest growing database community comes to connect, explore, and learn. Join the team that builds MongoDB in Chicago on June 20-21, 2017 for hands-on and deep-dive technical sessions, giving you the tools you need to build and deploy your giant ideas. Use code SEDaily to get $100 off tickets!


Deep learning promises to dramatically improve how our world works. To make deep learning easier and faster, we need new kinds of hardware and software–which is why Intel acquired Nervana Systems, a platform for deep learning. Intel Nervana is hiring engineers to help develop a full stack for AI, from chip design to software frameworks. Go to softwareengineeringdaily.com/intel to apply for a job at Intel Nervana. If you know don’t know much about the company, check out the interviews I have conducted with engineers from the company. You can find these at softwareengineeringdaily.com/intel.


Catch bugs before your users do with full-stack error monitoring and analytics for developers by Rollbar. With Rollbar’s error monitoring, you get the full stack trace, context, and user data to help you find and fix impactful errors super fast. You can integrate Rollbar into your existing workflow. Send error alerts to Slack or Hipchat. Or, automatically create new issues in JIRA, Pivotal Tracker, or Trello. Adding any of the Rollbar SDKs is as simple as a single command. Start tracking production errors in minutes. One cool feature is that GitHub repos can be deep linked directly to your stack traces in Rollbar. Go to rollbar.com/SEDaily, signup, and get the Bootstrap Plan free. Used by developers at companies like Heroku, Twilio, Kayak, Zendesk, Twitch, and more. To check out Rollbar, go to rollbar.com/SEDaily, signup, and get the Bootstrap Plan free.